EcoModo - The Best of TreeHugger

treehugger-gizmodo-week98.jpgThis week at TreeHugger: Sun-phobic gamers and pedal-power enthusiasts alike will love these instructions to rig up your bike to power your TV and PS2. A new fuel cell design that would convert methanol into hydrogen could provide 50 hours worth of juice to laptops and other portable electronics.

No longer small, ugly, plodding electric commuters, green cars are officially sexy; check out our top 10. Lastly, what's the perfect way to incorporate growing plants with your refusal to go outside and dig in the dirt? Yep, a USB greenhouse.

One of the first-prize winners of our TreeHugger/Popular Science/Instructables Go Green contest, this gadgetry wizard shows you how to rig up your bicycle to create a human-powered generator. His instructions are fairly detailed and incredibly involved — we won't pretend to understand all the mechanics involved — but now we want to make one for everyone we know for Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. The cost breakdown adds up quickly, but can you really put a price on getting exercise while gaming without leaving your house?

A new fuel cell design that would convert methanol into hydrogen could provide 50 hours worth of juice to laptops and other portable electronics. The compact device — unveiled by one Ronald Besser, a professor of chemical engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology, at a recent American Chemical Society meeting — could be instantly recharged by swapping in a fuel pack. In such a configuration, the fuel cell system could pack as much as 1,000 watt-hours per kg — more than three times the amount of energy the very best batteries can muster and much more than a conventional laptop battery can supply, and great news for those of us who live and die by our laptop's battery lives.

Green cars are officially sexy. No longer are they small, ugly, plodding electric commuters; green is the new black, and the cars are speedy, exciting, desirable sports cars. The hot wheels that made our recent top 10 list include something called a Smartuki, a Zap-X, the Venturi Fetish (ooh, girl), and, of course, the Tesla Roadster. 0-60 in 4 seconds and a top speed of 130 miles an hour is fast enough to get to the top of our list, and fast enough to get geeks everywhere some chicks when they're behind the wheel.

Lastly, with handy gadgets like the USB-powered necktie fan D'Light and typing orb, TreeHuggers everywhere are running out of USB ports. Something's gotta go to make room for this USB-powered mini-greenhouse. It features an adjustable growth light and an easy view window that offers "maximum plant protection!" It also comes with a computer interface that monitors growth rate, and includes calendar, wallpaper and bookmark settings so you can take care and grow your own desktop plants — who hasn't wanted to do that? — and comes with marigold seeds and artificial soil to get you started. If you put a food crop in, you may not have to leave your computer again. Ever.

TreeHugger's EcoModo column appears every Tuesday on Gizmodo.

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